Engine lopes no power no start or hard start - Dodge Cummins Diesel Forum
98.5-02 Powertrain Discussion of components that are directly involved in the power production and all that is needed to get and keep the truck moving . Engine , Transmission Ect..NO ADVERTISING .

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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 01:40 AM Thread Starter
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Engine lopes no power no start or hard start

This problem started out of the blue about two weeks ago.

When I say hard to start I mean it will either start right up and run great as long as you don’t turn it off or it will start and just lope for about 10 seconds and stall. It starts every time it will just do one or the other lope or run great no in between.

Once it does start it runs like new as long as I don’t turn it off, It will run for hours until the tank is empty without a burp, once I get it started I run all my errors I just leave it running and it never stalls out or anything but once you turn it off I’m finished and it’s unpredictable when it will start again.


Sometimes in 5 minutes something after an hour or two and something overnight but once it starts no more issues, runs like a new truck no smoke good response turbo sounds great no issues at all.



It has like New batteries, new started, 40,000 miles on vp44 injection pump so he says and same on the fas lift pump. New apps 350.00 from I think O’Reilly.

What I’ve tried: changed out the fas lift pump for the almost new carter lift pump. No fix, so I installed see through tubing and bleed air out of lines, truck will lope with no air in line and acts like it needs fuel will stall in 10 seconds.


If I press the gas peddle while loping it doesn’t increase idle. Still no fix.


Three starter pumps and it primes every time. Wait to start light turns on and primes for about two or three seconds and wait to start light goes out. Preheated works.
I checked fuel filter and it looked ok. I’ve tried the wire wiggle test and nothing. I haven’t checked fuel pressure or codes.


No check engine light on. I’m not sure what to check next, I just know it will eventually start again and run great but don’t you dare turn it off because when I do it rarely starts back up.

Doesn’t seem to matter if engine is hot or cold.


Today I got it to start three times in a row on two tries for each start and it raved up and was read to go. Now I’ve been trying for hours and nothing.

Thanks for any help on solving this mystery. This one really got me stumped. Thanks in advance Damon


1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 02:40 AM
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First thing to do is have codes checked with a good scan tool. Don't be surprised if you get VP44 codes. Others possible. But you do need to pull codes. No key trick on 98/99.

99 2500, Quad cab, 4x4 47RE, BD pressure lock on it, small BD 90/140 chip on the VP 44 connection plug, 17" 3rd gen wheels. 3.55 diffs. Ruenell front bumper and warn winch, Rancho adj shocks. 663k miles.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 03:52 AM
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start with SIMPLE solutions

Replace the fuel filter. Looks good, how so?
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 04:34 AM Thread Starter
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I won’t be surprised one little bit if it’s the vp44 injection pump, I’ve already replaced one six months ago why not buy another. If I had the money I would just buy 12 of them seems like they burn up every few months anyways. I cringe at just hearing that it just might be your vp44 pump.

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 04:39 AM Thread Starter
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The fuel filter just looked clean, a little brown but no crud, I just figured if it was clogged it wouldn’t start or run at all. If I don’t get the dreaded here it goes cringe VP44 code I will change out the filter.

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 05:22 AM Thread Starter
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I’ve had vehicles that would give you codes when you turned the key on off three times but I didn’t think the 98 had that feature. I’m now sure what the no key test is I’ll have to look for it.

I just went out side for the heck of it and tried the on and off key code and it gave no codes but I went ahead and tried to start it and it started right up and ran fine.
I turned it off and tried starting it again without the three on and off key code and it loped.
I thought maybe when I turned the key on and off three times that’s what made it start so I tried it again and it started up and ran fine again.
I’ll have to try this in the morning because it was probably some fluke or just luck. But it will be interesting to see if it actually does work every time.
That would at least get me to auto store for them to run the codes and I could turn the truck off so they could get the codes and know I could start it back up to get back home.

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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I thought I was dreaming last night but I wasn’t, It’s official I have repeated this test numerous times and I can get a clean start every time only if I cycle the key three times.

Looking back when stranded I would always wait for it to prime and then try to start but I believe sometimes out of frustration and burning up in the heat I probably never waited and just tried to start it three consecutive times and them were the times it started.
The procedure is: key on, key off, key on, key off, key on wait a second or two and turn to start.

It’s worked every time for me all this morning I’ve been walking outside and trying it and it’s a positive it will only start that way or it lopes. Anyone have any ideals what might be going on here? Thanks In advance

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
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I still haven’t learned how to respond to each individual using this forum yet or if it has that feature I’ll have to go look in the help section to try and figure it out. I think my first trip to town is get the codes read and buy a filter. I’m a little worried after I drive the twenty miles to town this procedure won’t work with the engine hot.

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 03:52 PM
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Find out if there's any codes and what the fuel pressures are.

'01 2500 Sport 4x4 5spd w/Fastcoolers, Mag-Hytec, EZ, RV275's, 4" w/o muffler, South Bend, Steering brace, aFe, 2 lo kit, Isspro Boost, FP, and EGT on pillar, Westach Trans/Diff temp gauge in dash pod, Raptor 100 w/ 1/2" line, Pac Brake, Rancho 9000, 285's
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 07:53 PM Thread Starter
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I’m at O’Reilly‘s now and he tried reading the codes twice but there were none. The key on off only works when the engine is cold. I’m here stranded waiting for the engine to cool down. If I get it started I’ll try and have a fuel pressure test done.

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 07:56 PM Thread Starter
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It finally cooled down enough and the three key turns starter it right back up.

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2019, 08:03 PM Thread Starter
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Finished fuel pressure test 12lbs at idle and 10lbs WOT

1998.5 Dodge Cummins turbo diesel 2500 4X4 automatic transmission, 135000 miles, 4 door. reprogram PCM New # J4062 56046355AR Change Authority TSR Dealer Code: 44522
Date: 5/25/05
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